'Different' testing mechanism allows Saudi Arabia to ease lockdown during Ramazan

We mark down geographical or populated areas where there’s high chance of huge spread, says health ministry...


​ News Desk May 01, 2020
Saudi government had eased curfew few days ago and allowed stores to open, following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19), in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. PHOTO: REUTERS/FILE

As lockdown in many parts of the world including Europe and the US continues to wreak havoc on economies, Saudi Arabia's 'different' testing mechanism to track and treat suspected patients allowed the kingdom to limit restriction during the holy month of Ramazan.

“We mark down geographical or populated areas where there’s a high chance of huge spread. They are dealt with by implementing preventive measures, and it is then treated as a concentrated area, which in turn protects the areas surrounding them,” Arab News quoted health ministry spokesman Dr Mohammed Al-Abd Al-Aly as saying.

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He said that the authorities are continuously evaluating the virus outbreak in any particular area and raise or lessen preventive measures as per the requirement.

So far 24,097 coronavirus cases have been diagnosed in Saudi Arabia and on Friday, 1,344 new cases were reported.

According to the ministry, 20,373 were active and 117 patients were in a critical condition.

“Those who have a high risk of contracting the virus, aged 65 and above, or individuals with chronic diseases and weak immune systems should be careful and should not go outside to shop. It would be best if they stayed at home, and someone else do their shopping for them,” Al-Aly said.

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He urged the masses to stay away from crowded places if there was a need to go shopping.

The spokesperson reminded to keep at least one-and-a-half meters’ distance from other people, wear a face mask, wash their hands or make sure to disinfect them when outside.

"Pay for items electronically and not in cash, and avoid to touch your face," he added.

The story originally appeared in Arab News

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